Chain mail

Riveted mail and plate coat zirah bagtar. Armour of this type was introduced into India under the Mughals.

Mail or maille (also chain mail(le)[1] or chainmail(le)) is a type of armour consisting of small metal rings linked together in a pattern to form a mesh. A coat of this armour is often referred to as a hauberk, and sometimes a byrnie.


The Vachères warrior, 1st century BC, a statue depicting a Romanized Gaulish warrior wearing mail and a Celtic torc around his neck, wielding a Celtic-style shield.[2]
Fresco of an ancient Macedonian soldier (thorakitai) wearing mail armour and bearing a thureos shield

The earliest examples of surviving mail were found in the Carpathian Basin at a burial in Horný Jatov, Slovakia dated at 3rd century BC, and a in a chieftain's burial located in Ciumești, Romania.[3][4][5] Its invention is commonly credited to the Celts,[6] but there are examples of Etruscan pattern mail dating from at least the 4th century BCE.[7][8][9] Mail may have been inspired by the much earlier scale armour.[10][11] Mail spread to North Africa, West Africa, the Middle East, Central Asia, India, Tibet, South East Asia, and Japan.

Herodotus wrote that the ancient Persians wore scale armour, but mail is also distinctly mentioned in the Avesta, the ancient holy scripture of the Persian religion of Zoroastrianism that was founded by the prophet Zoroaster in the 5th century BC.[12]

Mail continues to be used in the 21st century as a component of stab-resistant body armour, cut-resistant gloves for butchers and woodworkers, shark-resistant wetsuits for defense against shark bites, and a number of other applications.

Other Languages
العربية: زرد (درع)
asturianu: Cota de malla
беларуская: Кальчуга
български: Ризница
català: Ausberg
dansk: Ringbrynje
español: Cota de malla
فارسی: جوشن
français: Cotte de mailles
한국어: 쇄자갑
հայերեն: Օղազրահ
Bahasa Indonesia: Zirah rantai
italiano: Cotta di maglia
қазақша: Аймауыт
Bahasa Melayu: Baju zirah
Nederlands: Maliënkolder
日本語: 鎖帷子
norsk: Ringbrynje
polski: Kolczuga
português: Cota de malha
русский: Кольчуга
Simple English: Chain mail
slovenčina: Drôtená košeľa
српски / srpski: Верижњача
svenska: Ringväv
тоҷикӣ: Ҷавшан
Türkçe: Örme zincir
українська: Кольчуга
中文: 鎖子甲